About 30 returning international students have arrived at the University of Otago this year and another 50 are on their way.
The university remained optimistic of further approvals, university international director Jason Cushen said.
About 250 Otago international students met the Government's criteria to return, he said yesterday.
However, the University of Otago was only allotted 160 of the 1250 spaces made available nationally in the first two groups of returnee students.
Eligible students were contacted by the university to make sure they knew they met the criteria to return, but also to make sure they knew there was assistance the university could offer if they were in a position to come back, Cushen said.
"Otago has a team dedicated to keeping in touch and making this process as easy as possible; this happens from the beginning of and through the nomination period, until after the student arrives on campus."
The university committed to meeting half the managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) costs of those students returning under the arrangements of the first two groups.
Further, these students, once back on campus, were able to access student relief funding if needed, he said.
International students were first given the approval to return to finish their studies last month.
Then, last week, 500 MIQ spaces a fortnight were allocated over the next 10 months for foreign arrivals, to support New Zealand's economic recovery.
And another group of international students were part of the mix.
The Government's MIQ website said costs for temporary entry class visa holders for MIQ spaces were $5520 for the first or only person in a room.
To start the year, the Government said international students would need to be able to do more to support themselves in New Zealand.
The living expenses required for international students to be granted a visa were raised to $20,000, up from $15,000 previously.
The University of Otago limits international students to no more than 15 per cent of its total enrolments.
As other New Zealand universities reported hundreds of job losses in March due to the financial hole left by falling foreign enrolments, Otago was the only university that reported none.